Some media reports about the use of personal statements and their value in the admissions process gave a misleading impression, which we want to rectify.

We want to assure all applicants that, here at Downing, when making our admissions decisions, we certainly do take into account the information contained in personal statements.

We recognise that the process of writing a personal statement can help a student to better understand and express their own interests and motivations. This in itself is an important element in the preparation for an interview.

Downing College interviews a very large proportion of its applicants. We routinely use personal statements to inform the interview process.

The University of Cambridge's Supplementary Application Questionnaire, which all applicants are asked to complete after submitting their UCAS application, includes specific questions that allow students to expand on or fill in gaps in their personal statements.

In this way we try to ensure that we have consistent, relevant information about all our applicants, making our selection process as fair as possible.

Information about preparing a personal statement can be found at the: